discharge

verb
dis·​charge | \ dis-ˈchärj How to pronounce discharge (audio) , ˈdis-ˌchärj \
discharged; discharging; discharges

Definition of discharge

 (Entry 1 of 2)

transitive verb

1 : to relieve of a charge, load, or burden:
a : unload discharge a cargo ship
b : to release from an obligation will be discharged from further payment
c electrical engineering : to release electrical energy from (something, such as a battery or capacitor) by a discharge (see discharge entry 2 sense 9b) discharging electricity from a battery
2a : to let or put off discharge passengers discharge cargo
b : shoot discharge an arrow
c : to release from confinement, custody, or care discharge a prisoner discharge a patient
d : to give outlet or vent to : emit discharge emotions vehicles discharging exhaust fumes
3a(1) : to dismiss from employment had to discharge several employees last month
(2) : to release from service or duty discharge a soldier was discharged from the Navy
b : to get rid of (something, such as a debt or obligation) by performing an appropriate action (such as payment) failing to discharge their debts
c law : to set aside or dismiss : annul discharge a court order
d : to order (a legislative committee) to end consideration of a bill (see bill entry 4 sense 6) in order to bring it before the house (see house entry 1 sense 6a) for action
4 : to bear and distribute (something, such as the weight of a wall above an opening)
5 : to bleach out or remove (color or dye) in dyeing and printing textiles
6 : to cancel the record of the loan of (a library book) upon return

intransitive verb

1a : to throw off or deliver a load, charge, or burden
b : to release electrical energy by a discharge (see discharge entry 2 sense 9b) ensure that the electricity discharges safely
2a : go off, fire used of a gunHis weapon discharged .
b : spread, run some dyes discharge
c : to pour forth fluid or other contents where the river discharges into the ocean

discharge

noun
dis·​charge | \ ˈdis-ˌchärj How to pronounce discharge (audio) , dis-ˈchärj \

Definition of discharge (Entry 2 of 2)

1a : the act of relieving of something that oppresses : release
b : something that discharges or releases especially : a certification of release or payment produced the discharge as evidence
2 : the state of being discharged or relieved
3 : the act of discharging or unloading her discharge from the hospital
4 law : release from confinement a record of prison discharges
5 : a firing off the discharge of a weapon
6a : a flowing or issuing out a discharge of spores a discharge of mucus also : a rate of flow controlling the discharge of water
b : something that is emitted a purulent discharge a clear discharge from the eyes and nose
7 law : the act of removing an obligation or liability (see liability sense 2) received a full discharge from his creditors
8a : release or dismissal especially from an office or employment suing for wrongful discharge
b : complete separation from military service her discharge from the Navy an honorable discharge
9a physics : the equalization of a difference of electric potential (see potential entry 2 sense 2c) between two points
b energy engineering : the conversion of the chemical energy of a battery into electrical energy

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Other Words from discharge

Verb

dischargeable \ dis-​ˈchär-​jə-​bəl How to pronounce dischargeable (audio) , ˈdis-​ˌchär-​ \ adjective
dischargee \ (ˌ)dis-​ˌchär-​ˈjē How to pronounce dischargee (audio) \ noun
discharger \ dis-​ˈchär-​jər How to pronounce discharger (audio) , ˈdis-​ˌchär-​ \ noun

Synonyms for discharge

Synonyms: Verb

Synonyms: Noun

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Choose the Right Synonym for discharge

Verb

perform, execute, discharge, accomplish, achieve, effect, fulfill mean to carry out or into effect. perform implies action that follows established patterns or procedures or fulfills agreed-upon requirements and often connotes special skill. performed gymnastics execute stresses the carrying out of what exists in plan or in intent. executed the hit-and-run discharge implies execution and completion of appointed duties or tasks. discharged his duties accomplish stresses the successful completion of a process rather than the means of carrying it out. accomplished everything they set out to do achieve adds to accomplish the implication of conquered difficulties. achieve greatness effect adds to achieve an emphasis on the inherent force in the agent capable of surmounting obstacles. effected sweeping reforms fulfill implies a complete realization of ends or possibilities. fulfilled their ambitions

Examples of discharge in a Sentence

Verb She's due to be discharged from the hospital on Wednesday. We had to discharge several employees last week. Thousands of soldiers were discharged after the war. The judge discharged the jury. The ship discharged missiles against enemy targets. The gun failed to discharge. Noun The doctors approved her discharge from the hospital. Several former employees are suing the company for wrongful discharge. After his discharge from the military, he went to college to become a teacher. The damage was caused by accidental discharge of a hunting rifle. a rapid discharge from a gun
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Recent Examples on the Web: Verb Seven of them have been discharged, and so far none of them has been linked to the cluster of pneumonia in Wuhan. Nectar Gan, CNN, "A mysterious virus is making China (and the rest of Asia) nervous. It's not SARS, so what is it?," 7 Jan. 2020 The popular private equity executive and Dallas philanthropist had just been discharged from the hospital and carried just 120 pounds on his 6-foot-1 frame after suffering complications from cancer surgery. Cheryl Hall, Dallas News, "After facing down death, Steve Durham renews his passion for life, Horatio Alger," 5 Jan. 2020 He had been discharged from the hospital earlier this month and put into hospice care at his home in Monticello because of heart and kidney issues. Chris Tomasson, Twin Cities, "Vikings legend Fred Cox dies at 80: ‘Nobody’s going to live more than I did,’ he had said," 1 Jan. 2020 Prince Philip has been discharged from hospital on Christmas Eve. Prince Philip has left hospital and has returned home for Christmas, according to a new report. Amy Mackelden, Harper's BAZAAR, "Prince Philip Leaves Hospital on Christmas Eve After "Precautionary" Four-Night Stay," 24 Dec. 2019 Officials said one of the three has been discharged from the hospital and the other two are in stable condition. Gregory Katz, chicagotribune.com, "Two killed in London Bridge stabbing were celebrating a Cambridge University social justice program, school says," 1 Dec. 2019 The man was transported to Hartford Hospital for treatment and has since been discharged, Cicero said Sunday afternoon. Emily Brindley, courant.com, "Police: One man injured in Hartford shooting," 17 Nov. 2019 He had been discharged from the Army amid questions about his mental health and after threatening to kill a fellow soldier. USA Today, "A security empire deployed guards with violent pasts across the U.S. Some went on to rape, assault or kill," 31 Oct. 2019 All of those individuals are in stable condition, and some have been discharged, an official said Saturday afternoon. Htv National Desk, Houston Chronicle, "2 dead, 1 missing, 18 transported to hospital after Hard Rock Hotel construction collapse," 13 Oct. 2019 Recent Examples on the Web: Noun After discharge from the Navy, Fred worked for United Technologies (Pratt and Whitney Aircraft) in East Hartford, CT for 36 years as a jet engine plater. courant.com, "Fernand Victor Coderre," 12 Nov. 2019 After honorable discharge from the United States Army, Jason excelled as a rigging and lighting specialist. orlandosentinel.com, "Deaths in Central Florida: 11/10," 10 Nov. 2019 When discharge papers were signed, the care of a medically and emotionally fragile 11-year-old shifted. Caryn M. Sullivan, Twin Cities, "Caryn M. Sullivan: Lessons I learned as an amateur caregiver," 10 Nov. 2019 Suicide risk rises sharply the first week after discharge from a psychiatric facility and remains high even years later. Mandy Oaklander, Time, "Suicide Is Preventable. Hospitals and Doctors Are Finally Catching Up," 24 Oct. 2019 At some businesses, discharge papers, Veterans Affairs cards and veterans organization membership cards also can be used to prove service. Kelly Tyko, USA TODAY, "Where active military, vets can get free food and save July 4th and throughout the year," 3 July 2019 Upon his honorable discharge in 1955, among the awards and decorations were the National Defense Service Medal. courant.com, "Philip W. Bittel," 13 Dec. 2019 The lights on the tree are able to mimic the intensity and duration of his electric discharges. Kelsey Hurwitz, Woman's Day, "This Electric Eel Can Light Up A Christmas Tree, and It's Pure Christmas Magic," 5 Dec. 2019 In May, her family appealed her discharge from the center. Katie Engelhart, NBC News, "Some nursing homes are illegally evicting elderly and disabled residents who can't afford to pay," 29 Nov. 2019

These example sentences are selected automatically from various online news sources to reflect current usage of the word 'discharge.' Views expressed in the examples do not represent the opinion of Merriam-Webster or its editors. Send us feedback.

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First Known Use of discharge

Verb

14th century, in the meaning defined at transitive sense 1

Noun

14th century, in the meaning defined at sense 1a

History and Etymology for discharge

Verb and Noun

Middle English, from Anglo-French descharger, from Late Latin discarricare, from Latin dis- + Late Latin carricare to load — more at charge entry 1

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Time Traveler for discharge

Time Traveler

The first known use of discharge was in the 14th century

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Statistics for discharge

Last Updated

11 Jan 2020

Cite this Entry

“Discharge.” The Merriam-Webster.com Dictionary, Merriam-Webster Inc., https://www.merriam-webster.com/dictionary/discharge. Accessed 23 January 2020.

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More Definitions for discharge

discharge

verb
How to pronounce discharge (audio)

English Language Learners Definition of discharge

 (Entry 1 of 2)

: to allow (someone) to leave a hospital, prison, etc.
: to take away the job of (someone) : to end the employment of (someone)
: to end the service of (someone) in a formal or official way : to release (someone) from duty

discharge

noun
How to pronounce discharge (audio)

English Language Learners Definition of discharge (Entry 2 of 2)

: the release of someone from a hospital, prison, etc.
: the act of firing or dismissing someone from a job
: the act of ending a person's service to the military

discharge

verb
dis·​charge | \ dis-ˈchärj How to pronounce discharge (audio) \
discharged; discharging

Kids Definition of discharge

 (Entry 1 of 2)

1 : to allow to leave or get off The patient was discharged from the hospital.
2 : to dismiss from service discharge a worker
3 : to free of a load or burden : unload discharge a ship
4 : shoot entry 1 sense 2 discharge a gun
5 : to cause to shoot out of discharge a bullet
6 : to pour forth fluid or other contents The chimney discharged smoke.
7 : to get rid of by paying or doing discharge a debt He discharged his responsibilities.

discharge

noun
dis·​charge | \ ˈdis-ˌchärj How to pronounce discharge (audio) \

Kids Definition of discharge (Entry 2 of 2)

1 : the release of someone from a place The doctor approved her discharge from the hospital.
2 : the release from a duty or debt
3 : a certificate of release or payment
4 : the act of firing a person from a job
5 : an end of a person's military service
6 : an act of firing off a gun's discharge
7 : something that flows out The discharge was coming from a pipe.

discharge

verb
dis·​charge | \ dis(h)-ˈchärj How to pronounce discharge (audio) , ˈdis(h)-ˌ How to pronounce discharge (audio) \
discharged; discharging

Medical Definition of discharge

 (Entry 1 of 2)

transitive verb

1 : to release from confinement, custody, or care discharge a patient from the hospital
2a : to give outlet to or emit a boil discharging pus
b : to release or give expression to (a pent-up emotion or a repressed impulse) discharged his anxiety by working out with a punching bag

intransitive verb

: to pour forth fluid or other contents

discharge

noun
dis·​charge | \ ˈdis(h)-ˌchärj How to pronounce discharge (audio) , dis(h)-ˈ How to pronounce discharge (audio) \

Medical Definition of discharge (Entry 2 of 2)

1 : the act of relieving of something discharge of a repressed impulse
2 : release from confinement, custody, or care returned to work the day after discharge from the hospital
3 : something that is emitted or evacuated a purulent discharge from a wound a thick white vaginal discharge

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discharge

transitive verb
dis·​charge | \ dis-ˈchärj, ˈdis-ˌchärj How to pronounce discharge (audio) \

Legal Definition of discharge

 (Entry 1 of 2)

1 : to release from an obligation: as
a : to relieve of a duty under an instrument (as a contract or a negotiable instrument) also : to render (an instrument) no longer enforceable a formal instrument…may be discharged by either cancellation or surrender — J. D. Calamari and J. M. Perillo
b : to release (a debtor in bankruptcy) from liability for his or her debts
2 : to release from confinement, custody, or care discharge a prisoner
3a : to dismiss from employment : terminate the employment of
b : to release from service or duty discharge a jury discharge a witness
4a : to get rid of (as a debt or obligation) by performing an appropriate action
b : to fulfill a requirement for evidence which is required to discharge the burden of going forward— W. R. LaFave and A. W. Scott, Jr.
5 : to order (a legislative committee) to end consideration of a bill in order to bring it before the house for action

Other Words from discharge

dischargeability \ dis-​ˌchär-​jə-​ˈbi-​lə-​tē \ noun
dischargeable \ dis-​ˈchär-​jə-​bəl How to pronounce dischargeable (audio) \ adjective

discharge

noun
dis·​charge | \ ˈdis-ˌchärj How to pronounce discharge (audio) \

Legal Definition of discharge (Entry 2 of 2)

1a : the act of relieving of something that burdens or oppresses : release
b : something that discharges or releases especially : a certification of or a document proving release or payment
2 : the state of being discharged or released a party seeking a total discharge
3 : release from confinement ordering a conditional discharge of the alien on habeas corpusHarvard Law Review
4 : the act of removing an obligation or liability (as by payment of a debt or performance of a duty)
5a : a dismissal from employment or office
constructive discharge
: discharge of an employee effected by making the employee's working conditions so intolerable that he or she reasonably feels compelled to resign
retaliatory discharge
: a wrongful discharge that is done in retaliation for an employee's conduct (as reporting an employer's criminal activity) and that clearly violates public policy
wrongful discharge
: discharge of an employee for illegal reasons or for reasons that are contrary to public policy (as in retaliation for the employee's refusal to engage in unlawful activity)
b : a release from service or duty

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Comments on discharge

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